Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Steve Garvey and Friends feat Reggie Jackson at San Manuel Indian Bingo and Casino

I decided to check out the Steve Garvey and Friends dinner featuring Reggie Jackson at San Manuel Indian Bingo and Casino yesterday.



The cost of the dinner was $40 and featured a three course meal along with baseball stories from Steve Garvey and Reggie Jackson, who happened to be the guest of honor at the event. The dinner was scheduled to take place at 6:30pm.

When I arrived at the casino I met up with my friends Jeremy and Spencer. Our goal was to get Reggie Jackson's autograph tonight and to also enjoy dinner and to listen to old baseball stories told by both Reggie Jackson and Steve Garvey.

Both Reggie Jackson and Steve Garvey arrived promptly on time for the event.


The first course was the signature salad which contained shaved vegetables, herb flowers, nuts and seeds, dried fruits, and sherry citrus vinaigrette.


The main entree was either a top sirloin 10oz steak or garlic roasted petaluma chicken breast. I chose the steak which was damn good.


Dessert was chocolate bread pudding with candied kumquat creme anglaise.


Throughout the night both Garvey and Jackson recounted stories of their illustrious baseball careers and discussed how they felt when they faced each other and during critical moments of their careers like in the World Series. Reggie also discussed the story of his life how he came up from humble beginnings growing up in Wyncote which is a small town north of Philadelphia. He also discussed how much racism he had to endure while he was in the minors and mentioned how thankful he was for his teammates who protected him during those tough times.

There was also a Q and A session at the end of the night as well.

After the event was over Steve Garvey set up an autograph table for anyone who wanted his autograph or Reggie's autograph. It was well organized as everyone who got in line ended up getting an autograph. I ended up getting three baseballs signed by Reggie; an HOF ball, 2008 All Star ball since he threw out the first pitch, and a standard ROMLB.










My buddy Spencer ended up getting his jersey signed along with a Reggie Jackson plaque.



Overall it was another fun night of graphing and one of the rare nights I actually walked away from a casino feeling like a winner.


Signature Salad
Baby Greens, Shaved Vegetables, Herb Flowers, Nuts and Seeds, Dried Fruits, Sherry Citrus Vinaigrette - See more at: http://www.sanmanuel.com/index.php/events/event/garvey-friends-at-san-manuel/2014-10-14#sthash.e9HrX2Fi.dpuf
Signature Salad
Baby Greens, Shaved Vegetables, Herb Flowers, Nuts and Seeds, Dried Fruits, Sherry Citrus Vinaigrette - See more at: http://www.sanmanuel.com/index.php/events/event/garvey-friends-at-san-manuel/2014-10-14#sthash.e9HrX2Fi.dpuf

Postseason Graphing

Once in a blue moon both the Halos and Dodgers make the playoffs which basically extends the baseball graphing season. Here is a short recap of both the Dodgers vs Cardinals Series and the Angels vs Royals Series.

Cardinals Graphing

I didn't expect to get Yadi since I can never get that guy but I did end up with two of my main targets, Matt Holliday and Adam Wainwright.

Matt was kind enough to sign my 2011 World Series baseball.






Waino was cool as usual and signed my 2014 All Star ball for me.




Cal Ripken Jr

I ended up doing some postgame graphing when the Angels hosted the Royals for Game 1 of their ALDS matchup. Normally I wouldn't graph during the week since I try to graph only on weekends but I had to make an exception since Cal Ripken Jr. was in attendance. Last year I tried getting Cal's autograph at Dodger Stadium but he would always elude me. Thus the main objective on the night was to get Cal's autograph.

To prepare I had to find an authentic Cal Ripken Jr. jersey in advance so I would have it on time for him to sign it. That was the tricky part since Cal hasn't played baseball in over a decade now so it's tough to find a, authentic unsigned Cal Ripken Jr jersey in perfect condition. I searched online and ended up finding a great deal on a signed Cal Ripken Jr. jersey with full MLB Authentication and Ironclad authentication. The jersey itself was brand new with tags. The only catch was that the jersey was signed in front of the jersey on the jersey itself and not the back of the jersey on the jersey number. My personal preference is to get a jersey signed on the jersey number. Any other collector would have probably left the jersey alone but for me I had to get it signed in person myself.





When I arrived at the stadium I met up with my friends Jeremy and Phil and we waited for Cal to leave the stadium after the conclusion of the game. There was heavy security especially since there was a lot of media and since it was the playoffs.

When Cal walked out he headed towards his car. A lot of fans were waiting for him chanting his name and asking for him to sign. We all initially thought Cal would leave as soon as he got in his car but he didn't. He walked over to us and signed for about 15 minutes. As expected it was chaos but luckily Cal was behind a fence so he wasn't being bum rushed.

Cal is simply a class act as i've heard stories from other graphers and fans who have had previous encounters with him before. For each baseball signed he would blow air on the baseball after signing it so that the ink would dry to prevent smearing the autograph before handing the baseball back to the fan getting his autograph. Before he signed my jersey he specifically asked me what part of the number eight I wanted the jersey to get signed and also checked to make sure he didn't accidentally sign the jersey backwards. Cal took his time to make sure that everyone waiting for him got an autograph that night. It was simply legendary.



Some collectors may feel that I was being wasteful by not getting Cal on a different item since the jersey was technically already signed in the front with full authentication. Maybe I was being redundant for getting Cal to sign the jersey again. Personally for me the jersey has more sentimental value since now there is a story behind how I obtained the autograph. Anyone can technically buy an autograph but if there is no story to back up the autograph and if you personally didn't get it yourself there is less sentimental value tied to the piece. At least for me personally, every autograph I obtained myself has more value to me than the ones I obtained through trades or the ones I bought with authentication in the past. Simply put, its all about getting the autograph and the story that is tied to the autograph, and not just having the autograph.

I did end up getting one Royals autograph which was from Mike Moustakas. The Moose is tearing it up in the postseason and I wish him the best in the World Series.

Moose is another one of the local guys that made it to the big leagues. He's always been good to the Anaheim graphers whenever he is in town.





Now I need to get him on a World Series ball. Who knew the Royals would make it all the way to the World Series.



September Graphing Recap La Gran Fiesta Viva Los Dodgers

I haven't posted on my blog in a long time. Most of it is due to laziness especially since it's the end of baseball season and the long graphing season can be draining at times. Here is a short recap of what I ended up with the last month of the baseball season.

Angels vs Rangers Series

I only ended up with one autograph since I didn't graph much during the series but I was able to get Adrian Beltre on my 2010 All Star bat which matches perfectly with the 2010 All Star ball I got signed earlier this year at the Eddie Guardado Charity Bowling event.







Most importantly though I was able to graph with my homie Rich who happened to be in town during the Rangers series. Go follow Rich on instagram. He has one of the sickest collections out there in the graphing game.

The coolest item signed during the day was when my friend Alex got Mike Trout's autograph. The photo is special; possibly the best photo ever of Mike Trout in terms of sentimental value among Anaheim graphers.

The Halos clinched the AL West earlier during the week and my friends Alex, Moe and Joe were featured in a celebration photo next to Mike Trout.




When I met up with Alex he shows me this photo signed literally a day after the celebration.






All I gotta say is that it's the best signed Trout item i've seen so far this year. The photo is simply legendary.

La Gran Fiesta Viva Los Dodgers and Rockies Graphing

I decided to check out La Gran Fiesta at Dodger Stadium with my friends Alex and Rob. Any other day we would skip this event since the weather was hot and it's annoying to deal with crowds but we each had personal goals in mind in terms of graphing. Both Alex and Rob needed Josh Beckett on their set cards since Josh was pretty much going to retire after this season and it would likely be impossible to track down Josh at a later time to get his autograph. My goal was to get Nomar Garciaparra's autograph on my Nomar Red Sox jersey.





As usual it was packed like a circus as you would expect from any Dodger event.





What was nice is that the autograph lines were organized. Instead of making us walk through a mystery line they actually labelled where each player would sign and you had the choice to choose one specific player to sign for you. I ended up going to the Nomar line and both Rob and Alex were in the Beckett line.






I ended up getting Nomar to sign my jersey. For some reason he was personalizing every item he was signing today, even random items like his Starting Lineup figurines. I don't mind the personalization but I just wish he would space the personalization more so that he wouldn't have to shrink his autograph in a small space.



We also ended up graphing the Rockies since they were playing the Dodgers that weekend. I ended up getting a 2011 All Star baseball signed my Michael Cuddyer with the 1st ASG inscription.





All I gotta say is that Michael Cuddyer is one of the nicest guys in baseball. I've never had a bad graphing experience with him. He's always nice to the fans and takes pride in his autograph and never rushes a signature like most ball players do these days. I wish more guys would sign like Cuddyer.

I also got Brandon Barnes to sign my photo. He's also another nice guy in baseball. Brandon does a lot of charity work to raise awareness for The Pediatric Cancer Research Foundation and each year he runs a Charity Wiffleball Tournament during the offseason. I actually originally printed this photo out for him to sign at the Barnyard Invitational but I wasn't able to attend the event last year. It was nice to finally get the photo signed.




It's great to see him do well this year with the Rockies, especially since he is a local guy from Orange.

I also ended up getting cards signed by Wilin Rosario, Rex Brothers and Jhoulys Chacin.


Overall the trip to Dodger Stadium was well worth it as Josh Beckett did indeed officially retire as expected after the Dodgers lost to the Cardinals in the playoffs.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Rod Carew Signing at Stadium Nissan 9-13-14

I decided to check out the Rod Carew signing at Stadium Nissan last Saturday. Rod was scheduled to sign from 10am til noon. I love going to Stadium Nissan signings since the events are always organized.






My goal today was to get something different signed. I've gotten Carew's autograph in the past on an HOF ball so I wanted to have him sign a 2014 All Star Baseball under the logo with possibly the 1st pitch inscription since he threw out the first pitch. Rod also threw out the first pitch in 2010 back when Anaheim hosted the All Star Game but he had his best years as a player representing the Minnesota Twins so I decided to get the 2014 All Star ball signed instead.

Rod was cordial as usual and he signed my 2014 All Star ball under the logo. Sadly he wasn't signing any bats today as usual and no inscriptions which was a bit shocking since he used to at least inscribe HOF before at previous signings. I couldn't complain though since it's not everyday you get to have a HOFer sign for free.





I want to give a shout out to my friend Roman for taking the photos above for me. Thanks again Roman.



I want to thank the staff of Stadium Nissan for hosting another well organized autograph signing. I hope they host more signings next year.

Signed Baseball Garage Sale

Here is a list of signed baseballs below along with the price that are part of my signed baseball garage sale. You can email me at dhp226@nyu.edu or message me via kik at lowdownrow if you want to see photos of the items.

Shipping for each baseball is $5. For multiple baseballs ordered I can offer discounted shipping. I accept cash for in person local pickups from graphers in Southern California. Otherwise I accept Paypal from out of state buyers. Paypal payments can be made to dhp226@nyu.edu. Please make sure you send the payments as a gift so I don't get charged any paypal fees.

All baseballs are signed on the sweetspot in blue pen on Rawlings Official Major League baseballs unless stated otherwise. Some of the bargain bin $5 dollar baseballs are ROMLBs from batting practice. 



5 Dollar Baseballs
1) Sweet Lou Johnson Batting Practice ROMLB signed on the Sweetspot
2) Rudy Law Batting Practice ROMLB signed on the Sweetspot
3) Jamey Carroll Batting Practice ROMLB signed on the Sweetspot
4) Darren Dreifort Batting Practice ROMLB signed on the Sweetspot
5) Josh Lindblom Batting Practice ROMLB signed on the Sweetspot
6) Bobby Grich Batting Practice ROMLB signed on the Sweetspot
7) Arte Moreno Batting Practice ROMLB signed on the Sweetspot
8) Clyde Wright batting practice ROMLB with no Hitter inscription signed on the sweetspot
9) Ron Jackson Batting Practice ROMLB signed on the Sweetspot
10) Jerome Williams Batting Practice ROMLB signed on the Sweetspot
11) Mark Gubicza Batting Practice ROMLB signed on the Sweetspot
12) Jake Westbrook signed ROMLB under the MLB logo
13) 2011 Indians Team Ball: Manny Acta, Jon Nunnally, Tim Tolman, Justin Germano, Vinnie Pestano, Josh Tomlin, Adam Everett batting practice ball (Acta is signed in black sharpie and the rest are in blue bic pen)
14) 2011 Indians Team Batting Practice Ball: Chad Durbin, Justin Germano, Jeanmar Gomez, Josh Tomlin, Lou Marson, Jack Hannahan, Michael Brantley
15) 2012 Nationals Team Batting Practice Ball: Collin Balester, Alex Cora, Danny Espinosa, Jerry Hairston, Roger Bernadina , Bo Porter
16) Ernesto Frieri batting practice side panel baseball
17) John Ely Batting Practice ROMLB signed on the Sweetspot
18) Addison Reed batting practice ROMLB Signed on the Sweetspot
19) Sam Fuld Battice Practice ROMLB on the Sweetspot
20) Mike Scioscia signed in black pen has slight toning
21) Derrel Thomas ROMLB signed on the SS
22) Dan Gladden signed in black pen personalized to David
23) Brendan Harris signed in black pen with Angles COA

10 Dollar Baseballs
1) Juan Pierre side panel baseball
2) Eric Young Dodgers 50th Baseball signed under the logo batting practice baseball
3) Manny Mota Dodgers 50th Anniversary Batting Practice Baseball signed under the logo
4) Lucas Giolito with 16th pick inscription batting practice ball
5) Jay Johnstone
6) Jonathan Broxton
7) Howie Kendrick signed in black pen
8) Maicer Izturis
9) Hank Conger
10) Kyle Drabek
11) Miguel Batista
12) Edinson Volquez
13) Matt Hobgood with draft pick inscription
14) Matt Capps
15) Brandon League
16) Kevin Millwood
17) Scott Downs with Angels COA


15 Dollar Baseballs
1) Torii Hunter and Vernon Wells Angels 50th Anniversary BP Baseball signed under the logo
2) Nick Swisher side panel baseball
3) Miguel Tejada ROMLB under mlb logo
4) Carl Crawford side panel ROMLB
5) Don Sutton with HOF inscription Batting Practice Baseball signed on the Sweetspot
6) 2011 Twins Team Ball: Ron Gardenhire, Delmon Young, Scott Diamond,  Luke Hughes, Trevor Plouffe, Rene Tosoni , Dan Gladden
7) 2012 Rangers Team Ball: Ron Washington, Colby Lewis, CJ Wilson, Matt Treanor, Mark Lowe, Gary Pettis
8) Mickey Hatcher
9) Alfredo Griffin
10) Dioner Navarro with All Star inscription
11) Casey Blake
12) Mike Napoli signed in black pen
13) Juan Rivera
14) Bobby Grich
15) Gary Disarcina
16) Chuck Finley signed in black pen MLB Authenticated
17) Tim Salmon Angels 50th Anniversary Batting Practice Ball
18) Bob Lee with 1965 All Star inscription
19) Mark Langston
20) Tyler Chatwood
21) Jordan Walden
22) Ricky Romero
23) Brady Anderson
24) Trevor Cahill
25) Brian Fuentes
26) LaTroy Hawkins with Angels COA
27) Erisbel Arruebarruena side panel

20 Dollar Baseballs

1) Claude Osteen
2) Chad Billingsley
3) James Loney
4) Peter Bourjos
5) Vernon Wells
6) Frank Tanana
7) Wally Joyner
8) Don Baylor
9) Orlando Cepeda on Pacbell Opening Day Baseball signed on the Sweetspot MLB Authenticated
10) Troy Percival
11) Chili Davis
12) Chris Chambliss
13) Adam Kennedy
14) CJ Wilson
15) Neftali Feliz
16) Andrew Bailey
17) Yonder Alonso
18) Dustin Ackley
19) Ervin Santana with Angels COA
20) Carlos Quentin
21) Chase Headley
22) Justin Morneau (MLB Authenticated) has small areas of toning
23) Steve Finley

25 Dollar Baseballs
1) Mark Trumbo
2) Terry Pendleton
3)Al Leiter
4) Bret Saberhagen
5) Harold Baines
6) Shin Soo Choo black pen
7) Max Fried with #7 overall pick inscription
8) Lucas Giolito with 16th Pick inscription
9) Jason Giambi
10) Darryl Strawberry
11) Joakim Soria 2008 All Star Ball slight spotting
12) Corey Hart 2008 All Star Baseball 
13) Kenley Jansen 

30 Dollar Baseballs
1) Mike Moustakas
2) Nolan Arenado
3) Shin Soo Choo
4) Jurickson Profar Side Panel
5) Francisco Rodriguez
6) Starling Marte
7) Mike McCready with Pearl Jam inscription
8) James Worthy
9) Matt Moore 
10) Patrick Corbin

35 Dollar Baseballs
1) Josh Hamilton 2012 All Star Ball signed under the logo
2) Brandon Phillips
3) Torii Hunter 2010 All Star Baseball signed under the logo

40 Dollar Baseballs
1) Wade Boggs with HOF inscription
2) Don Sutton on HOF Ball under the logo
3) Magic Johnson signed in black pen under Dodgers Logo Ball

75 Dollar Baseballs
1) Nolan Ryan 2010 WS baseball with 2010 AL Champs inscription Ryan Authentication



Monday, September 8, 2014

Athletes vs Cancer 2nd Annual Celebrity Flag Football Hosted by Matt Barnes and Snoop Dogg

This was my second year attending the Athletes vs Cancer Celebrity Flag Football Game hosted by Matt Barnes and Snoop Dogg. The venue was different this year and the game was held at Granada Hills Charter High School with the kickoff starting at 6:30pm.






The change in venue didn't help when it came to graphing since security was tighter than ever before for this event. Just like a lot of other charity events there were a lot of no shows such as Kevin Durant, Monta Ellis, Nick Young, Brandon Jennings, Chris Brown and Nate Robinson.

The first autograph opportunity was from Chris Paul. We waited for Chris at the player parking lot. It was me and three other graphers. As Chris was about to sign for us security intervened and said no autographs since Chris was with his family. Chris didn't even get a chance to tell us no.





What was weird was that Chris walked towards us and gave each of us a handshake. I guess that was his way for feeling bad he couldn't sign.

We also got denied by Blake Griffin and Deandre Jordan who were escorted by security. 
Chuck Liddell, Terrell Owens, and Danny Trejo walked by but I had nothing for them.

The first autograph of the day was from Shawne Merriman who signed a mini helmet for me.


He was surprised to see that I had a Chargers mini helmet for him. I guess he didn't expect people to know that he was going to be at the event.

The next autograph was from Baron Davis who signed a photo for me. I love how he purposely signed the basketball pictured in the photo when there was plenty of room above the basketball. He's not the nicest guy you will meet in person. I guess he's still bitter how his career turned out.



This photo below pretty much sums up the day of how bad it was. Basically Chris and Blake weren't signing on the field either.







Chris left early and at the end of the game Blake and Deandre were mobbed by the fans so security escorted them out of the field.

My favorite autograph of the day was from Snoop who signed a photo for me. He was also mobbed as well but luckily I came away with an autograph today.